‘The woman left her waterpot, and went her way into the city, and said to the men, Come, see the man which told me all things that ever I did: Is not this the Christ?
John Chapter 4 Verses 28 & 29
How true are the words, ‘We know not what a day may bring forth’ (Proverbs 27:1). How true in the history of this woman! It shows God’s ordering of the affairs of men to fall in with His purposes of love and mercy. And how soon the change took place! She left her home to go to the well, an heir of wrath and the very creation groaned under the weight of the curse of her sins; she returned an heir of heaven and the ground beneath her was honoured to bear one of ‘the daughters of the King.’
As she left for the well with her waterpot her thoughts were steeped in the things of this world and far removed from Christ or her soul’s need. How little she knew that before she returned she would be joined in eternal union with the Christ of God. ‘I will betroth thee unto me forever in righteousness’ (Hosea 2:19). She had been to the well before and nothing unusual had happened. God’s time had not yet come. Now it had. ‘The time to favour her, yea the set time is come’ (Psalm 102:13).
The Lord Jesus addressed her, ‘Give me to drink.’ She expressed her surprise that he, a Jew would seek a drink from her, a woman of Samaria. When He referred her to ‘living water’ she did not understand. Like many another who hears the Gospel she had eyes and ears for everything else but she had none for things spiritual. But Christ had to meet her there.
Although she was one of ‘the enemies of the King’ she was one of those He had come to save. Her going to the well this day was as much part of God’s plan as was Christ’s having to go through Samaria. He began to convince her of her sin. He opened her heart. He sent an arrow to her conscience, ‘Go, call thy husband.’
This arrow pierced her heart and found firm lodgement there. He showed her her sin. Satan had made a net of her affections to entangle her in sin. Her conscience had been put to sleep. Now it was wide awake and her sin was made a sword in the hand of the Spirit.
It was ‘the fire’ and ‘the hammer’ to break her hard heart. She tried to escape, ‘I have no husband.’ Again He sends a sharp arrow to her heart, ‘Thou hast had five husbands.’ ‘Thine arrows are sharp in the heart of the king’s enemies’ (Psalm 45:5). How miserable she felt! His word as a searchlight entered her soul and revealed to her her dark history. That arrow could not be removed. Sinner, behold your picture! If you die in your sins this God will bring to light all your sins at the judgement.
Now this woman makes a last attempt to extricate herself, to sleep a little longer. She began to argue about religion, ‘Our fathers worshipped in this mountain…’ He did not let her go. ‘Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us’ (1 John 4:10). She was used to believing that the Jews were inferior, that the Samaritan Church was better. Here Christ shows He will have none of it. He refutes her argument.
‘God is a Spirit and they that worship Him must worship Him in spirit and in truth.’ Soul, is God speaking to you? Perhaps, like the woman of Samaria, you do not know it is He. Is He taking away your comforts? Is He smiting you? Is He disturbing your conscience? God calls you, ‘Go, work in my vineyard.’ How many, now in a lost eternity, said ‘I go’ and went not! This woman said ‘I will not go.’
He confronted her with the necessity of heart worship, ‘God is a Spirit…’ He led her to consider the coming Messiah. He faced her with the great challenge, ‘I that speak unto thee am he.’ The power of that challenge completely broke her stubborn will and, like Rebecca, she was made willing and went. We, like her, can do nothing until the Spirit come.
Consider now the effect of this change in her life.
The woman left her waterpot. She was so influenced by the power that had won her heart that she had no mind for anything else. She forgot her waterpot; she even forgot what had brought her to the well. Her mind was completely engrossed with her great discovery. The way of salvation was to her so clear, so free, so wonderful, so suitable for all. Nothing mattered but this. She must hasten to tell others about it.
This shows that meeting with Christ enables one to see the things of the world in their right perspective. When the soul is quickened and enlightened and concentrating on the glory of the Person of Christ and His Word, the pleasures of the world lose all their attraction and their hold, as when a dying man’s hand loses its grip. So it happened here; so in the case of the Apostle Paul who could not eat or drink for three days. So it is still.
As the power of Christ reaches the heart the affections ‘are set on things above.’ Spiritual things constitute the one thing needful. The soul’s view of Christ crucified as the provision for a lost world becomes truly glorious. The manner of life is changed. No wonder such persons are considered peculiar by the world.
The woman of Samaria acted wisely. ‘She left her waterpot.’ Had she waited she might have lost her zeal for the salvation of other lost souls. Nothing cools ardour like delay. Unbelief might hinder her. The adversary might remind her of her past wicked life, who was she, who would believe what a person of her character would say? But ‘she went her way into the city and saith to the men, Come see a man who told me all things that ever I did: Is not this the Christ?’ Do you wish to warn or counsel some? Do it now without delay.
Let us consider her invitation to others
‘Come see a man who told me all things that ever I did.’ He showed me my heart, how vile I am, how unworthy. He taught me that the pleasures of this world will never satisfy me. He spoke of the ‘water of life.’ He made me taste of it! ‘How sweet are thy words unto my taste! Yea sweeter than honey to my mouth (Psalm 119:103). So, taste and see that God is good.’ Who but Christ could see into my heart? Who but He could make me forget the world? So, give heed all who seek Him?
These are words that are often blessed – ‘Come and see.’ This was Christ’s invitation to the disciples of John the Baptist, ‘Master, where dwellest thou?, ‘Come and see.’ These also Philip used to Nathanael when he told him, ‘We have found the Messiah, Jesus of Nazareth.’ He replied, ‘Can any good thing come out of Nazareth?’ Philip’s answer was, ‘Come and see.’ The same invitation was given by Moses to Hobab in the wilderness on the way to the promised land, ‘Come thou with us and we will do thee good’ (Numbers 10:29).
This woman would be back at her waterpot and at the well. Her religion would not hinder her in lawful service. She would be more dutiful, more eager to help others. She would go often to the well where she met Him whom her soul loved. If assailed by doubt she would rebut Satan’s accusations by going over what happened at the well.
‘It was here I stood’; ‘this He said.’ And so must you do when the adversary assails you. You also remember where you met Christ who showed you all things that ever you did. To you who know Him this is life eternal. Make use of all means of knowledge and God will prosper you.
What of those who have not had such an experience? How often have you been invited to ‘Come and see?’ These men listened to the woman of Samaria and they came. Will you not give heed and come? Christ is here in the wells of salvation as truly as He was at the well of Samaria. May He meet with you all!